The etiquette of the national anthem rippled throughout the NFL as various players, started by Colin Kaepernick, kneeled to protest against racial inequality and injustice. Soon after it divided people among two sides, for the kneeling/silent protest and against it due to it being seen as disrespectful to both the flag and to the military.

This, however, was not what it was meant to do, so the message was twisted. Shockwaves were sent around the media as it clipped the NFL by its heels and in turn, a loss of viewers with the lowest ratings in years.

Cord cutting could be a prime reason for the ratings, but politics might have caused it as well. Weeks ago, the NFL implemented a new rule for the national anthem.

The change in rules

The NFL made a new rule that whoever does not want to stand for the national anthem has to stay in the locker room and others who are present must stand for it. If they do not their club will be fined. So the league will now be punishing its own players for doing the silent protesting but giving an option to stay in the locker room.

The new rule still does not resolve the issue at hand and people will know who did not stand for the anthem as they exit the locker room. People will still know who refused to participate.

However, it does alleviate some of the concerns with the kneeling possibly hurting the owner's wallets.

Donald Trump flipping the issue

The current President of the United States has had a role to play in all of this as he made it about disrespecting the military and country.

That is not what it was meant to be for as Kaepernick was protesting against racial injustice and police brutality against minorities in the US by kneeling.

Donald Trump turned the issue around and caused problems for the NFL.

Why the NFL is wrong

An article by Axios shows that most Americans don't believe the protests are unpatriotic.

According to the poll from Quinnipiac "the majority of U.S. voters - 58% - don't find kneeling by NFL players during the national anthem unpatriotic."

Players have felt the effects of the new rule as Olivier Vernon, defensive end for the New York Giants, will stand for the anthem and no longer kneel according to an article by Big Blue View. Vernon said "I mean, you never want to be told what to do, especially when it comes to your freedom of speech. But it is what it is."

The NFL never had a rule in place that individuals could not do a silent protest during the anthem. Players were free to do it because no rule was put in place that they couldn't and they were protesting for something much bigger than Football.

Because Colin Kaepernick was the centerpiece of this movement, he still does not have a job in the NFL, despite his athletic ability and proven excellence on the field. Kaepernick has since filed a collusion case against the league and the owners for not allowing him to play football again.

The owners made a move against the protesting because it hurts their wallets and bottom line. Ultimately, it shows that this issue will continue to plague the league. The NFL has been able to plug a leak, but others will start up and burst the pipes.